Carpetright, Britain's largest flooring company, seems to have gotten back on track after four difficult years: its turnover growth in Britain has sped up and its sales on the continent have improved as well.
Growth increase in its own country
Four years of profit alerts, declining sales and three new CEO's since 2011 are now seemingly a thing of the past: according to a trading update, the Carpetright group experienced an overall sales growth across all of its 600 stores in the United Kingdom, Ireland, Belgium and the Netherlands.
Its UK turnover grew 7.5 % in its previous quarter (up to 24 January) on a like-for-like basis, even better than the 6.5 % the group managed in the first six months of the year. It says the growth increase is thanks to the "free credit" it has given its customers during the holiday season.
Improvement across Europe
Things are not only picking up in Great Britain for Carpetright: for Europe, the group managed an operational profit in the first six months and it has now announced a 1.7 % like-for-like turnover growth (in euro) for its 137 stores across the Netherlands, Belgium and Ireland. It is the group's first like-for-like growth in more than 2 years.
Turnover still dropped a bit (- 0.8 %) because of two store closures, but negative exchange rate effects even resulted in a 6 % drop (in pounds) than in the same quarter the year before. Nevertheless, CEO Wilf Walsh is quite satisfied: "We have steadied the ship and there is a clear focus on where we want to go", he said. He is confident the company will be able to meet analysts's full-year expectations.